A Hot Opportunity for Mecc Alte in the Atacama Desert

Working with leading genset manufacturer, Genesal Energy, Mecc Alte Spain has supplied five alternators to the largest solar complex in Latin America.


Working with leading genset manufacturer, Genesal Energy, Mecc Alte Spain has supplied five alternators to the largest solar complex in Latin America.  

Located in the town of María Elena in the Antofagasta Region, Chile, Cerro Dominador is a large thermal and a photovoltaic (PV) power plantthat - unlike traditional PV or wind powered-plants, that produce as long as their source is shining or blowing – this system allows the sun’s heat to be stored to generate electricity for hours afterwards, including into the night.

The $1.3 billion mega solar complex aims to produce more than 110MW of clean energy and, according to forecasts, will reduce carbon emissions by 640,000 tons. *

Genesal Energy supplied five 6.3MW bespoke stand-by emergency generator sets that will withstand the high temperatures and desert altitudes to guarantee the supply of power across all of the plant's facilities, from lighting to start-up of wind turbines, in the event of a power shortage or blackout due to earthquakes which are common in the area.

Genesal approached Mecc Alte Spain to work with them on this high-profile project.

“We required a reliable alternator that would integrate seamlessly into our canopy and importantly deliver strong performance in what is a challenging environment. Mecc Alte’s expertise and knowledge have been critical to help us navigate the complex build specification.”

Jose Manuel Fernández
, Sales Director from Genesal Energy

The durable generator sets were also designed and built to work within high desert wind and sandy conditions and offer low sound attenuation to enable teams to work in the PV plant without disruption. Features included motorized grids and a 1mm light to prevent impurities from entering the engine as well as air intake valves and exhaust silencers.

Due to the complex and extreme nature of the installation, Mecc Alte supplied five industrial low voltage alternators including: ECO 46-VL4A, ECO 40-2L, ECO 46-1L and two ECO 46-2L.

A proven and compact design, the range combines latest technologies and materials to enhance  performance efficiencies through the MAUX Power Boost system. Working with the digital AVR, the MAUX boosts excitation in events of high motor starting and forces current in case of short circuit to maximum total life cost and enhance overall product efficiencies. Over 300% current is available for up to 20 seconds.

Other features include ingress protection and grey winding protection enabling OEMs, such as Genesal Energy more flexibility in stock and provide multiple voltage options to satisfy different applications.

A digital AVR is fitted as standard across all Mecc Alte industrial alternators offering improved self-regulation, precise monitoring and control, as well as diagnostic visibility via an App.

The versatility of the Eco series is formed to meet the requirements of industry and high technological specifications of applications such as those at Cerro Dominador.

“We are delighted to be working with Genesal Energy on this pioneering project which is redefining Chile’s energy landscape. Robust and efficient stand-by power still plays an important role in guaranteeing power supply, keeping the lights on and operations moving.”

Flavio Manderioli
, Managing Director, Mecc Alte Spain

The Solar revolution in Chile started in 2013 and has ramped-up following investment by the government to have at least 20% ​​renewable energy sources in its energy matrix by 2020, and 70% by 2050. **

Mecc Alte supplies low, medium and high voltage alternators from 1-5000kVA to a range of back-up and standby power projects around the world. 

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